Aftermath Project maakt subsidies bekend

The AfterMath Proect heeft de winnaars bekend gemaakt van de subsidies die de organisatie geeft voor het maken van foto-documentaires over de nasleep van belangrijke ontwikkelingen in de wereld. De Amerikaanse fotograaf Jim Goldberg en de Duitser Wolf Böwig zijn de winnaars.
Verder zijn er nog drie finalisten wier werk zal worden opgenomen in een boek dat in 2008 verschijnt: Andrew Stanbridge (VS), Asim Rafiqui (Zweden) en Paula Luttringer (Frankrijk). De publicatie met werk van de vijf fotografen wordt gerealiseerd door Mets & Schilt, Aperture en The Afternath Project.

Het Engelse persbericht vervolgt:

The grant recipients were selected by Lesley Martin, Executive Editor, Aperture; Kirsten Rian, Executive Director, The Aftermath Project; and Sara Terry, Founder, The Aftermath Project.

Jim Goldberg is considered one of today’s most respected photographers. His work with various sub-cultures and use of image and text are a landmark in the field. He has been exhibiting internationally for over twenty years, and his books include Rich and Poor, Raised by Wolves and Hospice. He has received numerous awards and public art commissions including NEA, Guggenheim and Gerbode Fellowships.

Goldberg’s Aftermath Project proposal is an ongoing project reflecting the insurmountable difficulties refugees, migrants, asylum seekers and trafficked people face, their dreams for freedom, and their indomitable will to survive post-conflict situations. These peoples are the aftermath of European and global problems, often leaving war torn and economically devastated countries, AIDS ravaged communities or totalitarian regimes, famine, and countries destabilized by American and European ventures, all in search of a safe home. Despite the harsh realities they endure, theirs is a story of hope and heroism. The individuals he photographs come from across the globe—Iraq, Somalia, Ukraine, Albania, Russia, Poland, Nigeria, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Egypt, Bangladesh, Pakistan, China, Philippines, Sudan, Kenya, Kurdistan, Afghanistan, Bulgaria, Palestine, Moldavia. This diverse population remains “invisible” and yet the European economy is wholly dependent upon them for skills, trade and services. These migrants have little access to education, work long hours under hazardous circumstances, endure inhumane conditions, assaults on their dignity, and persistent racial abuses. This project exposes basic human rights issues: access to care, access to public services, legal rights, asylum, and perhaps most importantly, the continual quest to build and live within a life of dignity and grace.

Over the past four years, Goldberg has been photographing and collecting oral histories—handwritings on Polaroids in different languages, video recordings, written text, and ephemera. He has photographed people at refugee camps, border crossings, agricultural farmlands, and now will show the beginning of their stories and return to some of the countries of origin, including Congo, Afghanistan, and Ukraine. Goldberg has a unique ability to convey the big picture, the whole story, through the smallest details or captured glance and gesture in his photographs. Through the faces he sees and the voices of the people who share their lives with him, Goldberg using his images as the words, sentences, and paragraphs combining with gathered text to reveal the common threads of humanity and continued presence that matter to us all.

A reportage photographer working internationally for over 15 years, Wolf Böwig has documented some of the world’s most catastrophic and poignant stories in recent history. A recent article on his work noted that Böwig’s photos reflect the moments before and after, the dignity between the traumas. He has been widely published, and recognized with awards through NEA, Leica, and Care International, among others. Böwig’s Aftermath proposal, The Forgotten Island, narratives of war in Sierra Leone, is the story of Bonthe Island, a small island off the south east coast of Sierra Leone, geographically sheltered and intact through most of the eleven-year war that raged throughout the 1990s. In late 1997 soldiers from the Revolutionary United Front seized power, and one five year old boy, Morie, was the sole survivor on an attack of his village on Bonthe. Approximately 1,200 people were killed from dawn to dusk, and Böwig’s project tells the political, social, and human story of Sierra Leone’s conflict as seen through Morie’s eyes. Deeply moving, his photos reflect a fragile peace, and a commitment to document Morie’s world honestly, poetically, and with the stark necessity of witnessing. This project is part of an ongoing body of work entitled, Kurosafrica, of which he writes, “What drives me to look closer to this territory is my own need for narratives and the knowledge, made of previous assignments and travels, of an extensive filigree of memory and dream. This project implies a descent into chaos. But not out of adventure, romanticism, or exoticism. I want it to be a search for ordinary people who can talk their lives from inside—a quest for words and images that build and assert a sense of their own place. If I have to give a name to this place it would have to be our common human condition.”

Andrew Stanbridge, American, proposed continuing his project documenting the landscape and local population in Laos affected by post-war reconstruction.

Asim Rafiqui, Kashmiri, proposed documenting the embattled region of Kashmir, highlighting the unseen costs of war and the efforts towards peace.

And Paula Luttringer, Argentinean, proposed a cartographical survey of geographic locations in Argentina where the mothers of missing children were abducted between 1976 and 1983. These winners mark the inaugural year of grant giving for The Aftermath Project.

Organization founder and board chair, Sara Terry says, “What was exciting about judging the applications for our first year of grants was the fact that two winners and three finalists emerged from the whole—each of them with a very distinct visual voice and motivation, but all of them with a clear take on the fact that war is only half the story. It’s our hope that this group of five photographers, representing traditional and non-traditional documentary approaches to their work, will help to create a broad forum that draws many voices into this crucial conversation about aftermath.”

The Aftermath Project is a non-profit organization committed to telling the other half of the story of conflict—the story of what it takes for individuals to learn to live again, to rebuild destroyed lives and homes, to restore civil societies, to address the lingering wounds of war while struggling to create new avenues for peace. The Aftermath Project provides grants to photographers to support their efforts to document the aftermath of conflict around the world, and seeks to help broaden the public’s understanding of the true cost of war through publications, traveling exhibitions, and educational outreach in communities and schools.